trans·​la·​tion | \ tran(t)s-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce translation (audio) , tranz- \

Definition of translation

1 : an act, process, or instance of translating: such as
a : a rendering from one language into another also : the product of such a rendering
b : a change to a different substance, form, or appearance : conversion
c(1) : a transformation of coordinates in which the new axes are parallel to the old ones
(2) : uniform motion of a body in a straight line
2 : the process of forming a protein molecule at a ribosomal site of protein synthesis from information contained in messenger RNA — compare transcription sense 3

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Other Words from translation

translational \ tran(t)s-​ˈlā-​shnəl How to pronounce translational (audio) , tranz-​ , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective

Examples of translation in a Sentence

She is working on a translation of the novel. a new translation of the Iliad There were English translations on the menu. the translation of economic power into political strength
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Recent Examples on the Web Scientists have tried to apply many of the same machine learning techniques to language, with impressive results in a few areas, like translation. Jeremy Kahn, Fortune, "A.I. breakthroughs in natural-language processing are big for business," 20 Jan. 2020 Google’s translation function did not have the same issue. Caitlin Yilek, Washington Examiner, "'Mr. Shithole': Facebook apologizes after vulgar translation of Xi Jinping’s name," 18 Jan. 2020 Similar translation capabilities are being added to PowerPoint Live presentations as well as Microsoft Stream. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Windows PCs push back against Chromebooks in schools with LTE, Gemini Lake Refresh chips," 16 Jan. 2020 Given this accounting, there will inevitably be a range of legitimate interpretations, and any translation will necessarily be a simplification subject to differences of individual opinion. Naomi Oreskes, Scientific American, "Don’t Fact-Check Scientific Judgment Calls," 13 Jan. 2020 While the translation extends into all areas of life, its importance in the wintertime has become increasingly popular stateside. Banu Ibrahim, CNN Underscored, "What is hygge? Shop the super-cozy Scandinavian home trend," 27 Dec. 2019 In touristy areas of the island, shop signs include Japanese translations, employees speak Japanese, and select businesses accept yen as payment. Stephen Alvarez, National Geographic, "What can archaeologists tell us about Jesus?," 23 Dec. 2019 The key is a map of three global language networks based on bilingual tweeters, book translations, and multilingual Wikipedia edits. David Grimm, Science | AAAS, "Our favorite science news stories of the decade," 20 Dec. 2019 English translations were provided in the bulletin, so all could follow along with the messages of thanksgiving for our many blessings and commitment to show gratitude by doing good works. Joan Hunt,, "Interfaith Service Sews Seeds Of Harmony," 6 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'translation.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of translation

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for translation

Time Traveler

The first known use of translation was in the 14th century

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Statistics for translation

Last Updated

24 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Translation.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 27 January 2020.

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More Definitions for translation


How to pronounce translation (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of translation

: words that have been changed from one language into a different language : words that have been translated
: the act or process of translating something into a different language
formal : the act or process of changing something from one form to another


trans·​la·​tion | \ trans-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce translation (audio) \

Kids Definition of translation

: the act, process, or result of changing from one form or language into another


trans·​la·​tion | \ tran(t)s-ˈlā-shən, tranz- How to pronounce translation (audio) \

Medical Definition of translation

: the process of forming a protein molecule at a ribosomal site of protein synthesis from information contained in messenger RNA — compare transcription

Other Words from translation

translational \ -​shnəl, -​shən-​ᵊl How to pronounce translational (audio) \ adjective

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Comments on translation

What made you want to look up translation? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


one that suddenly gains wealth or power

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